Windows destroyed Ubuntu installation

ve flag

I've just got my new PC. Unfortunately I still need a dual boot. Hence I installed Windows 11 first, then Ubuntu 22.10 and all went fine. By the way here my storage settings:

SSD 500 GB

  • 260 MB EFI partition
  • 500 MB recovery
  • 220 GB Windows
  • 244 GB Ubuntu /

SSD 500 GB

  • 93 GB ext4 /home
  • 372 GB ext4 <-- the one I formatted to NTFS in Windows

For some days I used the system in this way and I could boot both OSs. Then, from Windows, I had to format the last partition to NTFS. It was just some empty space I left for data storage. It was on the other SSD (not the system one and not where GRUB was installed).

After this operation, on power up Windows boots directly, i.e. no more GRUB.

I restored GRUB with boot-repair and I gained again the boot menu. But now, when I try to boot Ubuntu every time it fails. It first comes up with a very strange message:

enter image description here

It makes no sense since it's just after POST and GRUB. And I have 32 GB of RAM... Then it always checks errors on hard-drive and ends up in maintenance mode:

enter image description here

From this point I can do nothing but hard reset the machine. In fact, trying to continue in default mode just returns back to this message. The systemctl reboot does nothing. I tried to inspect the journactl as suggested but it's a HUGE file and I'm not sure what I have to look for.

Is there a way to recover my system or I need to install again Ubuntu from scratch? But most important: should I not even format a drive in Windows to avoid this mess?

Arjun K Shibu avatar
jp flag
Run Ubuntu using a live CD(Try Ubuntu) and run `sudo update-grub`. Check if that does anything
ve flag
@ArjunKShibu done: `/usr/sbin/grub-probe: error: failed to get canonical path of `/cow'`. Not sure, but booting from a live CD which GRUB would be updated?
ve flag
@ArjunKShibu ok, I tried to issue sudo grub-install --boot-directory=/mnt/sys/boot --efi-directory=/mnt/efi /dev/nvme1n1 after mounting both Linux and EFI partitions. Command executed successfully, no errors reported. Anyway, all is the same. Ubuntu starts, but fails to reach the login and stops in maintenance mode.
ar flag
Windows do not understand the `ext4` type of disk partition Ubuntu uses. It will appear as empty space in Windows. **Do not touch that empty space using Windows and NEVER format Ubuntu partition as NTFS.**.
ve flag

I solved removing the row in /etc/fstab related to the partition I formatted in Windows.

ve flag
Not sure why it does not just fail to mount a non-critical partition instead of entering in maintenance mode and stopping to react to commands.
oldfred avatar
cn flag
You can use nofail as a boot parameter. see `man mount` Then it does not have to time out.
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